Professor Gordon McMullan
Professor of English
Tel +44 (0)20 7848 2177
Address Department of English
King's College London
Room 7.33 Virginia Woolf Building
London WC2B 6LE
Office hours document available here
Research Interests and PhD supervision
I specialise in Shakespeare and early modern theatre and culture. I am a general textual editor of the Norton Shakespeare and a general editor of Arden Early Modern Drama. With Ann Thompson and Sonia Massai and colleagues from UCL and Goldsmiths, I co-run the London Shakespeare Seminar and I am a longstanding member of the steering committee of the London Renaissance Seminar. The MA in Shakespeare Studies, taught jointly with Shakespeare’s Globe, which I created and convene, celebrates its first decade in 2010.
I have been a Leverhulme Fellow and have held visiting fellowships at three Australian universities. With Philip Mead (University of Western Australia), I currently hold an Australian Research Council grant for a comparative study of the memorialisation of Shakespeare in 20th century Sydney and London. I am a founding member of the London Shakespeare Centre, launched at King’s in 2009.
I have research interests in four principal areas:
- Shakespearean and early modern drama, especially Jacobean theatre, with particular interests in cultural politics, in performance practices, in gender, and in issues of collaboration and repertory
- the editing of Shakespearean and other early modern dramatic texts
- the cultural and critical afterlife of Shakespeare and his contemporaries, notably the ways in which Shakespeare has been embedded in cultural memory in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries
- the idea of ‘late writing’ or ‘late style’ across the artistic disciplines. My most recent monograph, Shakespeare and the Idea of Late Writing: Authorship in the Proximity of Death, was published by Cambridge in 2007.
My first book, The Politics of Unease in the Plays of John Fletcher (1994), was a contextual account of the intersection of the canon of a major Jacobean playwright – the longer-lasting half of the team of ‘Beaumont and Fletcher’ - with questions of gender, colonialism and collaboration. While continuing to produce critical work of this nature, I’ve extended my engagement with early modern dramatic texts by way of textual editing.
I am happy to talk to anyone interested in working on a PhD in any of these research fields.
For more details, please see my full research profile.
- Gordon McMullan (2010) 'Memory's Library: Medieval Books in Early Modern England' JOURNAL OF BRITISH STUDIES, 49 (1), pp. 148-150. [Book Review (Print)]
- Gordon McMullan (2009) '"Plenty of blood. That's the only writing": (mis)representing Jacobean tragedy in turn-of-the-century cinema', in The Spectacular in and Around Shakespeare pp. 123-136 [Chapter]
- Gordon McMullan (2009) 'The Lateness of King Kear: Alteration and Authenticity in Shakespeare and Tate', in The true blank of thine eye: Approches critiques de King Lear pp. 83-101 [Chapter]
- Gordon McMullan (2009) 'What is a 'late play'?', in The Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare's Last Plays pp. 5-28 [Chapter]
For a complete list of publications, please see my full research profile
Expertise and Public Engagement
Literature of the Renaissance in England
A Mad World, My Masters: Performing Culture in Jacobean London
I have an interest in the performance of Shakespeare and early modern drama and have written on, for instance, the self-fashioning through identification with Shakespeare of Sir John Gielgud and Mark Rylance. I have enjoyed a close collaborative relationship with Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre for over a decade. I have also served as textual advisor for RSC productions and have appeared on BBC TV and Radio, discussing Shakespeare-related issues.
I regularly participate in a range of international conferences, notably those of the Shakespeare Association of America, and I have run several conferences and seminars, including two pairs of symposia, ‘Reading the Medieval in Early Modern England’ (King’s and the University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia, 2002-3) and, most recently, ‘Rethinking Late Style: Art, Music, Literature’ (King’s and the Australian National University, 2007-8).